“For NY seniors and those over 50, becoming knowledgeable about macular degeneration and working to prevent vision loss is more important than ever as the number of people affected by macular degeneration is continuing to climb due to the aging aby oomer population,” said Andreas Wolter, M.D., a NY eye specialist at Seeta Eye Centers with offices in Poughkeepsie, Fishkill and Carmel, New York. It is estimated that more than 2 million people age 50 and older have late age related macular degeneration (AMD) which represents a 25 percent increase between 200 and 2012. “Years ago the prognosis for patients with age related macular degeneration being able to maintain eye health and vision was relatively poor. Today, for most patients, with early detection, diagnosis and treatment, at a minimum we can prevent further vision loss from the disease and in many cases we can actually help recover lost vision,” said Dr. Wolter.
February marks the 2013 National Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Awareness Month. Our patients over 50, those with a family history of age related macular degeneration and especially seniors should take a moment to learn about AMD. AMD causes central vision to blur, but leaves peripheral vision intact. It is progressive and painless. There are two types of AMD, a “Dry” form and a “Wet” form. It is estimated that 85-90% of people with AMD have the Dry form which results in a gradual vision loss. Fortunately, only 10 percent of people with AMD have the Wet form which progresses much quicker and can cause catastrophic vision loss. Wet AMD is characterized by the growth of abnormal retinal blood vessels that leak blood or fluid causing visual distortions or decreased vision. Over time, this can lead to scarring in the Macula and create damage that may result in the loss of central vision.
Patients can often reduce their risk of developing AMD by not smoking as well as working to eat a heart-healthy diet rich in fish, fruit and green leafy vegetables, avoiding foods with Trans fats, exercising and controlling blood pressure and weight.
“What patients need to be aware of is that once you are over 50, it becomes increasingly important to have a thorough, comprehensive dilated eye exam every one to two years-and even more often if you have any family history of AMD or at the recommendation of your eye doctor. The key to preventing vision loss from AMD is clearly early detection, quick diagnosis and then immediate access to treatment with vascular endothelial growth inhibitor (VEGF) injections such as Lucentis®”, summarized Dr. Wolter.
Patients who wish to learn more about age related macular degeneration or are concerned about their macular degeneration risk should feel free to call Seeta Eye Centers and schedule an eye examination by calling 845-454-1025 , visiting Seeta Eye Centers or facebook.com/seetaeyecenters.
Seeta Eye Centers is conveniently located for patients from Westchester County, Rockland County and throughout the Hudson Valley, Dutchess County and Orange County including Poughkeepsie, Fishkill, Middletown, Kingston, New Paltz, Newburgh, Beacon, Bedford, Catskill, Cornwall, Eastchester, Ellenville, Florida, Goshen, Harriman, Harrison, Highland, Highland Falls, Kerhonkson, Mahopac, Monroe, Montgomery, Mount Kisco, New Rochelle, New City, Scarsdale, Saugerties, Spring Valley, Tarrytown, West Point, White Plains, Woodstock, Yorktown Heights and Yonkers, NY.